8 Must-Have Items for Every Youth Basketball Coach

Get the gear that will help you run practices smoothly and prepare you and your team for game day

We founded Hustle with the goal of making life easy for youth and amateur coaches by providing them with the resources necessary to plan for practices, prepare for games and develop their players into their full potential. Since we launched the free-to-download Hustle app in early 2016, we have been able to assist more than 40,000 coaches with this goal in mind. The following curated list is meant to accomplish the same thing as always: make life easy for the volunteer coaches whose primary focus should remain being great parents and strong role models.

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1. Basketball Bag

The Molten Basketball Bag is about as standard-issued as it gets. It’s big enough to hold up to 6 inflated basketballs plus whatever other small gear you want to cram in there (see below for ideas). It has an adjustable shoulder strap that will allow you to lug it to away games with ease. 

2. Orange Cones

These bad boys are exactly what you need to wrangle a team of excited eight year olds into some fashion of organization. Plus they’re nice and bright and soft enough that they won’t hurt if a player happens to fall on top of them. 

3. Coach’s Whistle

When all else fails to get your team’s attention, you need something to cut through the noise and the chitter chatter. Enter this ultra-loud, undersized stainless steel whistle that comes complete with a lanyard. Get the attention you deserve with this coach’s whistle. Unfortunately, the respect of your team is sold separately.

4. Stopwatch

While you might think that the stopwatch app on your phone is sufficient, think again. Bouncing basketballs and flailing arms followed by cell phone screens crashing to the gym floor are the stuff of nightmares. Get yourself a cheap, sturdy stopwatch for sticking to a practice timeline and you won’t regret it. Here’s our pick for a simple stopwatch.

5. Jump Ropes

There may be no better activity to help hyperactive young players burn off excess energy than jumping rope. While they’re at it, they’ll also be improving their cardio, agility and foot speed. This pack of 6 should be enough to keep half of your team busy at once.

6. Dry-Erase Board

When you find yourself in a tight game and need to draw up a game-winning buzzer-beating play, you’ll be happy to have this two-sided dry-erase board in your coaching toolkit. Feel free to send us a photo of the trophy ceremony afterwards. Get the dry-erase board here.

7. Traction Pad

Every once in awhile, you’ll find yourself playing in a gym that hasn’t been swept in months. Don’t curse the janitors. Reach into your bag and grab a traction pad to help your kids maintain their footing.

8. The Hustle App

We’re not shy about plugging our own app. That’s because we’re confident that we have developed the best way for youth and amateur coaches to find instructional content that will help them save time, build their players’ skill sets and run efficient and fun practices. Download the Hustle app for free on iTunes and Google Play:

Matt Michaux